Believe it or not, dropping the price might not always be the solution to earning more business. You could be one of the Unicorn Categories where customers expectations revolve around something OTHER than price, and in even rarer circumstances, shoppers are even willing to pay MORE for the category. We’re going to journey on down to Wonderland and see if Alice can tell us more about the lucky few that shoppers whip out the big bucks for.


5.) Fresh Seafood


It’s not uncommon for shoppers to come into the grocery store looking for some kind of cheap easy meal, and find themselves face to face with that saran wrapped package of Tilapia. Perhaps they are having a party and need some shrimp to leave out with the cocktail sauce. Either way you can bet the farm that the best way NOT to get them to buy is with that “SPECIAL PRICE!” “NEW MARKDOWNS” tactics. Fresh Seafood comes in at number five for shoppers being willing to pay more for what they want. This could be anything, a fresher, higher-quality product, a more healthy option, or even something that was caught in a certain part of the world as opposed to being farmed locally. Priorities shift for 47% of shoppers when it comes to a sensitive food choice like fish. Pleasing those you intend to feed is a popular and front-of-mind aspect of shopping this category and people are willing to pay you for it.


4.) In-Store Bakery


How yummy, some freshly baked warm bread. Oh, but what’s this? There is a second baguette right next to this one for half the price! Only, this one is cold, and so hard it could be the weapon that Colonel Mustard used in the Conservatory. Which will you throw into your cart? Well, if it wasn’t obvious enough already, you’ll throw the warm one. You’ll also brush off that x2 price tag because at the end of the day, there really is nothing better than fresh bread. In fact, the whole in-store bakery category behaves this way. In total 47% of shoppers will pay more for freshly baked items from the bakery. Keeping a stock of freshly baked items may take more time and money from an operations stand-point, but it is likely that those costs will be made up by the eager beavers waiting to pay top dollar for those tender biscuits that just popped up out of the oven.


3.) Deli Cheese


It’s because there is such a difference! Are you kidding?! Have you even seen packaged cheese slices. They peel out of that wrapper looking like a bit of solidified liquid accurately reflecting every crease and fold from its once wrapper. Then we think about Deli Cheese, delicately sliced on the spot, from a larger piece and kept in conditions indicative of a much greater level of care. Sandwiches are a big part of many people’s lives, and 50% of shoppers say that they are willing to pay more for their favorite deli cheeses. There is a level of prestige that comes with shopping at the deli, and whether you’re a manufacturer or a retailer that is involved in this space, you shouldn’t be afraid to make that experience cost just a little more.


2.) Served Seafood


If you read our blog about people choosing their food based on the health benefits or ethical sourcing, then you are familiar with this category showing up. What we are proving here is that when it comes to served seafood, not only do people prioritize other aspects of their choices over price, but they will actually pay more for a seafood choice that aligns with their values. Whether this revolves around location of production, smell, display, or any number of other factors, the lesson remains simple. Paying a little extra is definitely worth it for 52% of the shoppers in this category.


1.) Gourmet Food


Well at least the number one category that shoppers are willing to pay more for makes sense right? Ever heard of “cheap” gourmet? Yeah, we haven’t either. The truth is, that 62% of Gourmet Food shoppers say that paying more for their choices is okay with them, so long as they are getting the Gourmet food they expect. The audience for this category may not be as vast as the other categories listed here, but that doesn’t mean a price promotion is the answer to bringing in new business. The niche audience that exists in this category expects to pay more and it doesn’t bother them. Gourmet food is a luxury, and your shopper’s purses are bursting at the seams to get their hands on it.


Were you surprised at the categories shown here? If you work in the industries for these categories, are you charging your customers enough? Is there money being left on the table? Maybe you’s like to know if your category is number 6, or even 130+ ranked for customers willing to pay more. If so, make sure you subscribe here for all the latest shopper data updates as it applies to you. Also, head over to the home page for more info and contact options.


by Tyler Erickson

Digital Marketing Manager, Shopper Intelligence North America